Tuesday, July 27, 2010

A soft aqua hue

Here I am, editing the section about Chris (Derek) in The End of San Francisco. It’s a hard part to edit -- I’m trying to cut it to the absolute core, not explain anything, so you feel the loss but you don’t quite know why it’s happened. That’s still how I feel. That’s why it’s hard to edit, all this feeling and I’m stuck again. In some ways I can’t believe I still haven’t run into him -- once I think I saw him from the back when I was on the train, and he was standing outside of an AA meeting. It’s hard to say whether I’m any more ready to run into him now than I was at the beginning. Almost two years ago, right? I still feel stuck.

But I’m starting to get excited about moving, meeting new people in a new town. The boxes from my grandmother’s house finally arrived, and now I have all this art -- although I’m not unpacking most of it, since I’m moving so soon. In my new apartment, there will be so much art -- art everywhere. I guess there already is art everywhere in this apartment, but there will be even more -- much more.

I did open one box and take out the painting that’s on the top, and then I put one small oil painting on the wall, a tiny one, maybe 12 x 8, from the ‘60s -- when I was at my grandmother’s house, I read a review of one of her shows from that period. I liked what the reviewer said about her white lines, apparently she was known for her white lines. I should look for that review, although I don’t know where I would look because I know I don’t have it here. I think it was in the Washington Star, which at the time was one of two dailies in DC, it went out of business some time in my childhood, before the right-wing Washington Times became the second paper in our nation’s clampdown capital.

This painting is somehow gray and filled with color in between and beneath the white lines and sometimes pushing over them too, the textures of the paint and the diagonals like a net, wrapping up and guiding your eyes in all directions. Or maybe not a net, because actually your eyes always end up moving up to the left, I counterclockwise circle. I also have these small tables that my grandmother collaged and I never noticed the way the light layers their surfaces too, maybe because I never saw them in this light. At the largest table, a white one that almost looks marbleized I’ve placed a painted pale blue wooden chair that I sat on outside when I was there at her house. Even if the chair isn’t comfortable, it almost looks like it was made for the table, the white paint and wood peeking from underneath a soft aqua hue.

I do love the way all these things make me feel, little and suddenly filled with light. When I look closely I can feel my fingertips more, a sense of play, sadness too but somehow a hopeful kind.

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